day : 03/07/2010 11 results

West Seattle Crime Watch: ‘Night Out’ exactly one month away

(2009 WSB photo from Night Out party in Fauntleroy)
Signed up for a “Night Out” crime-preventing/neighborhood-strengthening party on your block yet? This year’s event is coming up August 3rd. And Seattle Police have changed a few things this time around, as noted here. For one – there’s a quicker way to sign up online – you can do it right here, right now. For two – they’ve set up a Seattle Night Out Facebook page (you can “like” it here). If your neighborhood does decide to have a Night Out block party, and you wouldn’t mind us stopping by for a photo, please let us know – SPD generally doesn’t share lists/maps of registered parties, so we’ve made this request to you the past two years, and have met some great folks as a result.

Video: Fire call at Ash Grove Cement; ‘smoke’ and dust seen

(photo added 9:04 pm, see explanation below)
ORIGINAL 8:35 PM REPORT: Just mentioning this because so many have e-mailed and texted about it. We also saw the apparent smoke that, according to the 911 log, came from the Ash Grove Cement facility on East Marginal Way (map). It was originally a “fire in building” call; however, the call was already “closed” less than half an hour after it started. So what was it? No info yet but we’ll try to find out. That may be tough – we just reached someone who answered “control room” at the plant, and as we started to identify ourselves as news media, they said “You’ll have to call back Tuesday morning” and hung up.

ADDED 9:04 PM: From Dan Berger, the photo above and this note:

Driving south on E. Marginal on my way back to W. Seattle @ 8:05 pm. I observed a large plume of ash pouring out of the top of a silo at the Ash Grove Cement plant. The plume completely obscured visibility down E. Marginal past the plant. Attached is a photo taken about 15 min. later, with the cloud subsiding. At this point there is now just a wispy haze south of the plant. No idea how much dust coated the neighborhood.

We have just driven past the plant on East Marginal – we could see, from a distance, at least one fire truck getting hosed off near the plant’s entrance road. There’s definitely some dust being kicked up as we drive along East Marginal, but not enough to show on a photo.

ADDED 11:33 PM: We’ve received video from Michelle, shot while what looked like smoke was pouring from one side of the plant. Focus on the left side of one of the silos in the center of the frame:

If no information emerges sooner, we will be checking back on Tuesday, as suggested.

Open for the 4th (and beyond): Alki Point Lighthouse tours

Story and photos by Keri DeTore
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

When asked by US Coast Guard Auxiliaryman Craig Smith whether I’d visited the lighthouse before, I sheepishly admitted that, in my 27 years in West Seattle (13 of them three blocks from the lighthouse), I had never taken the tour.

If you haven’t managed to get there either, I urge you to find a sunny weekend afternoon and do so – since it’s only open during the summer, and only on weekends. Not only will you learn a lot about the history of the lighthouse and its inner workings, you’ll have a lovely view from the top of the tower.

Read More

West Seattle 4th of July eve! What’s happening here tomorrow

In case you haven’t checked it out yet, we wanted to point you once more to the WSB 4th of July page – info on what’s happening tomorrow, starting with the Admiral 4th of July Kids’ Parade (all welcome, starts at 10 am at 44th/Sunset), continuing on through a list of which fireworks displays are most visible from West Seattle. Traffic, transportation and shopping info too. Find it all here.

Followup: The Swinery’s co-owner tells his side of the story

Friday afternoon, we updated the news about the sudden departure of Swinery founder Gabriel Claycamp, after Christopher Boffoli talked with him. Subsequently, Christopher interviewed the man who’d been Claycamp’s partner – James Dillon. For those following the Swinery saga, here’s what he has to say.

Story and photo by Christopher Boffoli
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

James Dillon, The Swinery‘s “angel investor,” says that, since its founder Gabriel Claycamp announced his departure, he has stepped in “to ensure the success of the Swinery’s mission of continuing to provide high-quality, sustainably sourced products to the community.”

Dillon says right off the top that, for customers, nothing about the business will change. The Swinery is NOT closing (as is reiterated in a message today on one of its websites). Claycamp has indeed left and he says he has complete confidence in the capabilities of the staff they have in place. Their product lines and hours will remain the same.

Read More

Update: The Beer Junction is open for business

(Photos by Christopher Boffoli)
As proprietor Morgan Herzog (in the green shirt) promised, as of 11 am today, his brand-new Junction business The Beer Junction is open. The glassware in the foreground of the top photo is part of what he’s selling in addition to 640 different beers and more than 50 wines.

When we talked to Herzog for our story yesterday, he also mentioned other beverages including sake, mead, champagne and soda. Just back from the store (4707 42nd SW), Christopher Boffoli notes, “Customers may notice that they have blackout curtains up front and that the lights are out in all of the beer cases. The folks at The Beer Junction tell me that, much like the way beer bottles are usually a dark color of brown or green, the low light is to protect the quality of the beer.”

There’s more info about The Beer Junction’s hours in our Friday story. (Yes, they WILL be open tomorrow.)

Garden-lovers’ paradise: Tours (and more) coming up!

July 3, 2010 11:52 am
|    Comments Off on Garden-lovers’ paradise: Tours (and more) coming up!
 |   Fun stuff to do | Gardening | West Seattle news | White Center

Sun or no sun, the gardens are blooming – and you’ve got an abundant chance to see the best of the best, in a variety of specialties, coming up within the next few weeks. Here’s the rundown:

GREENLIFE AT WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST, NEXT FRIDAY-SATURDAY-SUNDAY: Lots of edible-gardening how-to’s will be part of this first-ever expo during West Seattle Summer Fest in The Junction next Friday through Sunday. It’s co-presented by West Seattle Nursery (which has more info here) and Sustainable West Seattle. You’ll find GreenLife in the lot at 44th/Edmunds (alongside the Chase drive-thru) all three days of Summer Fest, starting at noon Friday, 10 am Saturday-Sunday.

EDIBLE GARDEN TOUR NEXT SATURDAY – AND OPTIONAL ‘COOP TOUR’ ADD-ON: 11 am-4 pm Saturday (July 10th), more than a dozen gardens are showcased in this Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle-presented event. You can see them previewed here; tickets are on sale online here. (There’s also an add-on which will enable you to see the West Seattle stops on the Seattle Tilth Coop Tour the same day – more info here.)

WHITE CENTER JUBILEE DAYS GARDEN WALK, JULY 11: The day after that, as part of White Center Jubilee Days, it’s the return of the WC Garden Walk, noon-5 pm. Free maps will be available in the parking lot of McLendon Hardware, which is sponsoring the event. More info here.

WEST SEATTLE GARDEN TOUR, JULY 18: WSB is a proud co-sponsor of this year’s West Seattle Garden Tour, coming up two weeks from tomorrow, and it’s no cliché to say it’s bigger and better than ever. The gardens themselves (previewed here) are just part of what you get for the ticket price (with proceeds going to these five beneficiaries). At noon at the South Seattle Community College Arboretum (one of the stops), you’ll get to see/hear West Seattle’s own Willi Galloway, edible-gardening expert. And right afterward, 1-2:30 pm, tour ticketholders get to sample wine, cheese, chocolate, and pastries courtesy of the renowned SSCC culinary-arts program. Tickets are on sale online now (kids under 12, free) and “in person” at these six locations (including WSB sponsor Metropolitan Market).

Followup: Alki Homestead owner makes his decision: It’s for sale

With a rally/group photo planned tomorrow afternoon at the Alki Homestead, organized by local preservation groups including the Southwest Seattle Historical Society, owner Tom Lin says he’s offering those groups first crack at buying the fire-ravaged landmark, now that he’s decided to sell it, a few weeks after he told us he was considering that option. Here’s the text of his letter (from this PDF):

Alki Homestead/Fir Lodge is being offered for sale to Seattle’s concerned historical organizations such as:

Historic Seattle
Southwest Seattle Historical Society
The Washington Trust for Historic Preservation

Sale Price – $2,000,000 An endowment fund of $500,000 would be provided from these funds by the current owner Tom Lin

Alki Homestead/Fir Lodge was offered to the Southwest Seattle Historical Society under the same terms in 2004 by the previous owner, Doris Nelson, according to her family.

These historical organizations claim to have more extensive resources and the expertise needed to ensure that the Alki Homestead/Fir Lodge retains its historical place in the community and would not be torn down.

Tom Lin will accept offers from interested historical organizations no later than July 31, 2010. Beyond July 31st the property will be offered to the general public at a different sale price and terms.

Contact Information: Tom Lin at

Lin had been trying to proceed with a plan to rebuild the historic log building and add other uses to its site – uses without which, he says, it wouldn’t be financially viable; he discussed his challenges in this story we published two weeks ago. This morning, he tells WSB, “It has been over a year and a half since I have tried to bring Homestead back. The cost has become a burden. I had a long conversation with [previous owner] Doris Nelson’s estate yesterday. They understand the dilemma I am in and they respect my choice. In fact, [they] had already told SWSHS to buy the building again 6 months ago … I think when I spoke to you a few weeks ago, I told you I was pretty close at giving it up. Now it is time. I hope they can address that during the rally.”

The rally – to which Lin tells us he finally did get an invitation, after he pointed out to Historic Seattle that he had not received one – is scheduled for 1:30 pm tomorrow on the sidewalk and street (which will be closed for the event) in front of the Homestead. Clay Eals from SWSHS says there’s been one change in the slate of political leaders scheduled to be there – City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen will be out of town, but County (and former City) Councilmember Jan Drago will be there, which Eals notes is “quite fitting because (she) was the Seattle City Council sponsor of the landmark designation ordinance for the Alki Homestead building in 1996.”

Previous WSB coverage of the Alki Homestead is archived, newest to oldest, here.

Today: Little League; South Park ‘Market’; Longhouse rummage…

July 3, 2010 8:29 am
|    Comments Off on Today: Little League; South Park ‘Market’; Longhouse rummage…
 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

Highlights from the West Seattle Weekend Lineup: The West Seattle Little League 9-10 All-Stars play for their district championship this morning at 10, Bar-S Field on Alki Point … For our neighbors in South Park to make it through the bridgeless years, they need some love. Today’s a great chance to do that, as the weekly South Park “Market on Wheels” debuts for the season, right by the blocked-off south end of the shut-down bridge, 14th S. and S. Cloverdale (map). 10 am-4 pm, more info here … On your way to or from South Park, the Duwamish Longhouse hosts a rummage sale and frybread fundraiser today, same hours, 10 am-4 pm … Reminder that Marination Mobile will NOT make its WS stop today or next Saturday … Finally – there’s live music at venues including Kenyon Hall, C&P Coffee, Skylark Café and Club, and Shadowland … Details in the WSWL; and the full lookahead to tomorrow’s holiday events/info is on the WSB West Seattle 4th of July page.

West Seattle 4-year-old fights leukemia: How to help Hannah

Before the holiday weekend really revs up – we wanted to share this look ahead to something that’s happening next Saturday. Same day as West Seattle Summer Fest and the Seafair Pirates’ Landing at Alki, but this is big in its own way too, and everybody who’s rooting for little Hannah Grage is hoping you will stop by. She’s a West Seattle 4-year-old fighting cancer – acute lymphoblastic leukemia, diagnosed in April – and her family needs help with expenses, so friends, neighbors and relatives are having a garage sale/bake sale/lemonade-stand fundraiser one week from today – Saturday, July 10th. It’ll be 8 am-2 pm (so there’s plenty of time to go BEFORE, or after, Summer Fest and/or Pirates), 7228 39th SW (that’s in Gatewood; here’s a map; here’s the flyer for the fundraiser). You can read more about Hannah’s fight by going here, to see what her mom’s been writing about what they’re going through.

Get a kick out of summer: Youth soccer program starts Wednesday

July 3, 2010 12:52 am
|    Comments Off on Get a kick out of summer: Youth soccer program starts Wednesday
 |   West Seattle news | WS & Sports

You’ve cheered the FIFA World Cup 2010 games … endured the bzzzz of the vuvuzelas … now, a chance to learn how to play soccer — providing you’re 7 to 14 years old. High Point Community Center is presenting the program for the next six Wednesdays, 6 pm, at HP Commons Park; call 684-7422 to find out more, and in the meantime, check out the official flyer.